So this article was teed up for publication in the January edition of the local bar newsletter(OCBA Briefcase) but because of out of state travels, flu, deadlines, etc, I didn’t get it out in time. This time last year, I was writing about the benefits of belonging to your local bar association. A very upbeat topic in comparison to reviewing a prior year’s noteworthy events. Now that we are seven weeks into 2018 I look at this blog and think, “wow I need to sound more positive.” And maybe that should be our resolution for this year but even more so setting a goal for living not in the past but with our best efforts to be our best self, better our profession and provide for our families sounds really good. So without further explanation lets look at 2017 .
YEAR IN REVIEW – 2017: THE YEAR THAT KEEPS ON GIVING
It is hard to believe we are in February 2018 already, but before we completely turn our backs on 2017, we should look at the year in review. You may, in a contemplative moment, consider the new year resolutions that were made, met or left unsatisfied in comparison to past resolutions and current resolutions. Very difficult to not get political but I try – no really I try.
I have a faint memory of thinking no year could be as bad as 2016 and I cannot wait for 2017 to get here. On the other hand, 2016 was a great year for the stock market but there are other more important concerns for reviewing a year. Then, there was 2017 and I could not wait for 2018. It might be that for 2017 we should just use one word to describe it – SURVIVAL. Let’s look at why.
January: Presidential Inauguration, Hamilton, Dear Evan Hansen, a Women’s march wearing “indescribable body part hats”, Neil Gorsuch nominated to the Supreme Court, and everything Russian. Not too awful a start?
February: Fake news becomes a thing. Patriots win the Super Bowl. Academy Awards goof when a CPA firm gives wrong winner. North Korea launches a missile. Adele wins again with one of her trademark tunes. Some of this entertainment stuff is depressing.
March: More fake news and Russia. For some reason I have no interest in March Madness.
April: The sexual harassment avalanche begins with Bill O’Reilly at Fox News. Note to self – never fly United Airlines unless you have to. Cannot wait for the fall and college football. NBA refs are definitely the worst refs in any sport.
May: FBI Director fired. More Russia. Special counsel hired to investigate Russia or White House, not sure which or in what order. First news reporter body slammed by candidate. Evidence that journalist have same level of popularity as NBA referees and lawyers. State Legislature has no budget for the State of Oklahoma.
June: I was sworn in as a member of the Bar of the United States Supreme Court in Washington, DC. Meet RGB. Yay! Amazon purchases Whole Foods, is building a distribution center in Oklahoma City and will be able to deliver food to your door on the same day thereby putting out of business all other brick and mortar grocery retailers. Facebook reaches 2 billion users, most of which make political statements on Facebook. Judicial Nominating Committee remains intact despite Legislative threats-still no budget. Does Russia own Amazon or Facebook? Big 3 assembled for Thunder run at Warriors and Rockets! Presti is a genius, give him the State budget to fix. Lincoln Riley Era begins!
July: Speaking of social media, the new President uses it often. Most of the White House staff that began in January has now been replaced. O.J. Simpson is granted parole.
August: Sports Illustrated selects an unproven team to win the Big 12 Football Championship and play in the College Football Final Four, snubbing my alma mater. I am not bitter. Monuments of Confederate Generals and politicians are being removed all over the U.S. Charlottesville, VA occurs. People continue to amaze with their lack of intelligence. ESPN makes stupid decisions after this, including allowing one on air former player to choose Baylor as the Big 12 Champs. Berkeley and Oakland are in anarchy stages. North Korea shoots more missiles. Despite multiple Constitutional challenges the AWCA remains in place. Still no state budget. Hurricane Harvey. Total eclipse! At least it is time for football!
September: More North Korean missiles. China building islands to claim expanded ocean boundaries. Massive data breaches occurring everywhere. Russia or China to blame? Clinton tell all book hits the shelves. We voters were duped. NFL loses half its audience as the National Anthem issue raises its head. Stand or kneel? Plant the flag gate. Hurricane Irma, hurricane Jose and hurricane Maria(I think they ran out of Hurricane names with many more making their presence known). Central Mexico earthquake. On the bright side the number of Oklahoma earthquakes is at a 5 year low.
October: Sooners beat Texas in the Cotton Bowl. Hollywood unravels with a revealing of the sexual assault list, #metoo begins. Catalonia leaves Spain much like Britain left the EU. Get dissed at handshake and grab body part gate. At least he wasn’t wearing a body part hat and marching in the street. What is a Bitcoin and can you hold it. Ask Russia during the investigation. Hurricane Nate. New Star Wars movie opens! To no one’s surprise Rey is the Last Jedi.
November: More North Korean missiles. New iPhone launch- ho hum. Alabama escapes national disgrace in Senate race. NBA refs still suck, maybe worse than 2016. Iran and Iraq earthquake. Sadly, Napa burns in wild fires. Mud slides to follow for California. This Big 3 thing is questionable. Still no State budget. Bedlam: 88-18-7
December: Sooners win Big 12 again! Sooners go to CFP and Rose Bowl. Thankfully that happens in 2018 and I do not have to report the result here. Everything was great right up until the squib kick. Still struggling with Big 3. Wasn’t defense a Thunder thing? Why can’t millionaire ballers make free throws? Senators and Congressmen admitting and denying harassment charges resign. State budget deal so bad that Governor vetoes it. On the National scene Income Tax Reform progresses despite male congressional resignations. Largest number of persons to sign up for Obama Care in any given year. On the JNC doesn’t work let’s scrap it front, I’m happy to report that there were numerous District Judges, Appellate Judges, a Court of Criminal Appeals Justice and a Supreme Court Justice appointed in 2017- 11 total. Yes, it sounds like we need our legislature to fix that. Reports that number of vinyl music sold is at all time high- China or Russia? Big 12 basketball refs are worse than NBA basketball refs. The NBA 2 min report is as worthless as our legislature. After last 8 years of steadily increasing stock market and last two blockbuster years of increases this market must correct or profit take or something at some point. When do I sell? When do I get off this rocket? Then how do I get back in? How do we keep electing any/all of these legislators? What body part hats do they wear in marches in North Korea? So many questions to ponder for December.
Thankfully, 2017 came to a close.
After reviewing this I’m not sure what more I could do but rank events in descending order which may be more depressing than an Adele song. But rather than depress myself that way, I’ll just watch one of the thousand slasher movies from 2017. Let’s put the past behind us and move into the new year full tilt. Out with the old and Cheers to 2018, may it be better than what came before – in a good way! #Whynot!
Byline: Michael W. Brewer is an attorney, founder, and partner of Hiltgen & Brewer, PC in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. To contact Mike, email email@example.com, call (405) 605-9000 or tweet him at @attymikeb. For more information, please visit http://www.hbokc.law.